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Siebe Gorman and Deep Sea Technology:
From World Wars to world records

Located in the south of the Royal Borough of Kingston Upon Thames, and nestled between Tolworth, Chessington and Hook, the Cox Lane industrial estate opened for business around 90-years ago. Since then it’s been home to more than 100 different businesses, covering a broad range of industries.

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Records show that workers on Cox Lane contributed to several key moments in the UK’s history. These include Britain’s war effort in the 1940s, the sixties cultural revolution, international success in Formula 1, and many other design, engineering and technological developments at the roots of modern technology.

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Without doubt, the many, many labour hours collectively clocked up by people at Cox Lane, combined with work at similar sites throughout Britain, were central to projecting the country’s status as a technological and cultural leader.   


With support from The National Lottery Heritage Fund, The Community Brain has since 2022 been exploring the heritage of Cox Lane. We have delved into the archives and spoken with former workers from a range of businesses, using this research to deliver exhibitions and artistic interpretations. These pages offer a summary of some of our findings.

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Gala Cosmetics

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Social heritage

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Deep Sea Defence


Present day

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Public programme

Explore the industrial estate

- Download the walking trail

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The Book: Exploring Cox Lane

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In 2023 The Community Brain teamed up with Kingston University Press to publish Exploring Cox Lane: The Story of Chessington’s Industrial Estate.


The book connects the dots between Cox Lane’s rich heritage and its exciting present, where it remains a centre of innovation and local employment. It features a photo essay from local photographer Stuart Tree, chapters exploring the role of Cox Lane and industrial estates more widely today, and a more detailed overview of the history of the site. 


Additional colour is provided by a series of dazzling presentations created by Kingston University BA Illustration Animation students, whose creative interpretations of the industrial estate were produced in response to a brief from The Community Brain. 

Exploring Cox Lane is available to purchase on Blackwells and a large number of other online retailers.

Made possible by

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